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AppleToTheCore.me

I'm a total Apple addict, as you might tell.

1994 Performa 575

It’s been just about 6 months since I scored my Macintosh TV. That’s how long I’ve been searching for a replacement logic and analog board. The Macintosh TV was pretty much dead when I got it. The TV tuner card looks like it took a pretty nasty electrical surge. It’s pretty toasty. Shortly thereafter, I managed to score another analog board, but it didn’t work. I guess that one was dead too. About a month later, I scored a Mac LC 520 for $5. I was hoping I’d be able to pull the analog board out of that. Unfortunately, it was dead too. Between the Macintosh TV, the LC 520 and the spare board, I was certain I could make a functioning machine out of them. No such luck.

I’ve been watching eBay ever since for the perfect score. A few candidates came and went, but I never bid on them. Some of the asking prices were just crazy. I’m not paying $200 for a 575 in unknown condition. I did miss the end of an auction for a 575 board that I was watching. I was pretty upset about missing that. I got distracted and totally forgot I was watching it. In the beginning, I was hoping to just find a compatible analog board, but even if I did find a new one, there was never a guarantee that the logicboard in my 520 was good either. So, I was keeping my eye out for a compatible logicboard too. In the end, I figured it was probably easier, and cheaper in the long run, to just find a new machine and swap the guts.

There’s a few Macintosh TVs that have been sitting on eBay for months with ridiculous $800 starting prices. That’s not an option. For $800, I’d sooner put that towards a Twentieth Anniversary Mac. It’s bad enough I paid $300 for a broken Macintosh TV. In my own defense, I didn’t know if it worked or not. The seller couldn’t verify it so I took the gamble considering the “usual” $800 price tag. Using that argument, $300 is still a pretty good deal even for a broken one. If I can get it to work for a few bucks then I’ll be happy. I just don’t want to spend another $200 fixing it up. That sort of defeats the purpose of “getting it on the cheap”.

As luck would have it, a fully functional Performa 575 went up for auction for $60. I was the only bidder.

Performa_575__0011

The first order of business was pulling the logicboard out and making sure it didn’t have any leaky caps. I checked the PRAM battery too. It was dead of course. I’ll have to make another one.

Performa_575__0012

Performa_575__0013

The caps look good. If I have some extras left over from the Mac Classic recapping endeavor, I might cap this one too.

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The standard issue Apple-branded 250MB 50-pin SCSI hard drive.

Performa_575__0018

OK, with the logic board and hard drive out, it’s time to crack it open. I always open up my machines before I power them on for the first time. It’s better to be safe than have a fried computer. You never know what’s in there that could cause damage once all the internals have power.

Performa_575__0019

Just like the Macintosh TV and the LC 520, disassembly involves removing 2 screws from both sides of the enclosure…

Performa_575__0020

…and one from the bottom.

Performa_575__0021

Wow, see? This is why I open them up first. You never know what environment your latest conquest was exposed to. It could be filled with some sort of conductive dust or something. Maybe it sat in a workshop for years and it has a considerable amount of sawdust in it. It could catch fire and destroy an otherwise perfectly functional vintage Mac.

You need to clean it out before you do anything!

Performa_575__0022

Filthy!

Performa_575__0024

I took the machine outside and blew out what I could with a can of air. Some of the more stubborn stuff I took care of with a little brush. It’s not perfect, but I don’t think I’m in any danger of damaging the machine. I’ll give it a good solid cleaning once I move the boardst into the Macintosh TV.

Performa_575__0025

I plugged it in a powered it on. Green LED! Woo hoo! That’s more than the Macintosh TV and LC 520 did! I’m off to a good start.

Performa_575__0026

The machine powered right up to a clean OS 8 install.

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There’s a good 160 MB left on the hard drive.

Performa 575

Startup was pretty speedy, despite the svelte 36 MB of RAM.

Performa_575__0039

Performa 575

System profiler shows a 68LC040 processor clocked at a snappy 33 MHz.

Performa_575__0041

Performa 575

I’m very happy that this machine works. I’m going to take a bunch of voltage measurements on the analog board and compare them to the others. Hopefully using this as a test bed, I can identify the point of failure on the other three boards. I’ll also try the 520 logic board in here and see if it works too. It would be great if it’s just the analog boards that are dead. Hopefully it’s just a matter of replacing a few dead caps.

So, all together I paid
  • $311.88 + $60 S/H for the Macintosh TV
  • $59.99 + $27.99 S/H for the 575
  • $4.99 for the LC 520 (local pickup)
  • $19.95 + $14.10 for the Mac TV analog board

For a total of $498.90.

I really wish I hadn’t added that up. I felt much better thinking I only spent $300 bucks. The Macintosh TV is a really cool machine. The only black Macintosh sold in the US. It’s a really hard item to find. I mean, they only manufactured them for 5 months and only made 10,000 machines. But $500? Wow. I guess when all is said and done, it’ll be my new crown jewel. (Until the next one.)